Interview: Cord Nunez, agriculture sales director North America
If you’ve been to a horticulture trade show in North America recently, chances are you’ve spotted Cord Nuñez, our agriculture sales director in North America. Coming from a Business Administration background, Cord made the switch to agriculture in his early 30s. After having gone back to Hartnell College to study Agriculture, he’s been working in the field for more than 15 years now.
“It’s a great market, it just takes time in agriculture to introduce new technology. People in the industry are open to new technologies though, they just want something that’s proven to yield results and has a company with a good track record, we now have both.” Tackling the North American market for HPNow is his main challenge at the moment, after having successfully introduced other new technologies to North American growers.
From California to Copenhagen
Cord joined HPNow in the summer of 2021. Following a training at headquarters in Copenhagen, he immediately flew back to the States for his first trade show on behalf of the Danish company: Cultivate 2021 in Ohio. It would be the start of a job where there’s no room for boredom.
“On a typical day, I am used to getting up early, being in Ag. But also, because it’s 8 or 9 hours later in Copenhagen, depending on daylight saving time. So sometimes I’m on the phone at 5 or 6 AM, working via video conference calls.” The days continue with web meetings, calls, proposals, water analysis, and corresponding with the team in Copenhagen, Cord says. “A lot of time goes into the proposals in particular – each system is sized to the irrigation system. We make it a point not to undersize or oversize, for peak performance.”
The resulting proposal is then delivered either directly to the client (in 10-20 percent of cases), or most of the time, to distributors or channel partners. “Especially in the early stages, I spend a lot of time answering questions, and training the dealers, usually I’m on the phone a dozen times a week for an hour or more to do just that.”
Growing more with less
Despite the long days, Cord is happy to be at HPNow. “It’s great that we’re doing something to better the planet, and agriculture in general. We all do our part in agriculture to grow more with less, and HPNow contributes to that mission. With our machines running autonomously in the background – it’s a high-quality application to help a grower maximize the potential of their crop by increasing the quality of one of the most important inputs, their water. Whether it’s eliminating biofilm or pathogens, clean water is key.”
And it’s not just about the product of course. “The people at the company are amazing – HPNow is one of the best companies I’ve worked for. I very much enjoy communicating with the team, even if it’s mostly through video chat. There are people from all sorts of cultures and backgrounds, I enjoy that, we blend well, and it makes us a more balanced team. I’ve learned a lot from all the knowledgeable people on the team, and I am incredibly grateful for the experience.”
Cord looks to the future of the company with optimism. “I really think we’re at an inflection point – thanks to the efforts of the R&D team, the system will be even more stable than it already is, and it will be able to generate higher concentrations in our Gen 2 stacks. That not only reduces the water input needed to generate the UltraPure, but it also opens opportunities in other market segments, such as food processing, as well as sanitation, and surface cleaning. Green Generated UltraPure peroxide generated onsite is, after all, a clean alternative to consumable chemicals. That’s exciting, making things better for the environment and safer for the users – and I’m also seeing growing interest from the North American market in our technology.”
When he’s not working on sharing HPNow’s green technology with the North American market, Cord can be found on the links – after all, he lives in Monterrey, the ‘golf mecca of the world’, as he calls it. “I enjoy playing golf, although I must admit I haven’t had much time for that lately. And I have a family with 2 young kids to keep me busy. Ultimately that’s the reason why we work: family.”